My mindset has always been one of exhibiting patience, favoring the building of a perennial playoff contender through a strong farm system, savvy trades and a few well placed free agents. With the hiring of Sandy Alderson and the others of his new regime, such a mentality is going to be put into action. There will be no big splash free agent signing for 2011. Possibly not even a major trade. And the sanity of many Mets fans will be put to a test. Can they accept another mediocre season or two in order to build something special thereafter?
I predict that the Mets will start the 2011 season with pretty much the same roster as they finished with last year. Take the starting pitching staff, not a very imposing one. Picture the starting rotation of Mike Pelfrey, the ace, followed by R.A. Dickey, Jon Niese and Dillon Gee. Contenders for the fifth spot could be Pat Misch, Jenrry Mejia, or a back end rotation guy signed as a free agent. Johan Santana will enter the picture at some point.
Our bullpen has question marks from top to bottom. Takahashi and Feliciano, two mainstays last year must be replaced. Parnell, Acosta, Green and Igarashi will most likely return and anchor the bullpen Hopefully, K-Rod will return from his personal issues as well as injury. Certainly, the bullpen, last year’s strength has question marks galore.
Lastly, let’s take a look at our offense. In 2010, the Mets were overall, 24th in runs scored, 22nd in batting average, 25th in on base percentage, and 23rd in slugging. Sabermetrically or otherwise, the Mets offense was pitiful.
What is Sandy Alderson to do all winter? Possibly, very little. Many feel that there is no money to spend. But wait. There is good news. After 2011, approximately $60 million comes off the payroll. And Sandy will have the opportunity to show his stuff.
Just look out over the horizon, past the 2011 season. There is nothing but blue sky and sunshine.